Masahide Ota joined Peace Boat's 73rd voyage, his first on the peacebuilding NGO's ship, leaving Yokohama on April 24.
The president of Peace Boat's Global University and former governor of Okinawa shared an Okinawan maxim:
In Okinawa we have a motto: "Peace, independence and co-existence."The visionary scholar and leader suggested just as the people of Japan are working together to recover from natural disaster and nuclear catastrophe, the people of the world must work together to build peaceful societies.
More about Masahide Ota, his scholarship and peacebuilding:
• Extensive interview by Satoko Norimatsu published at The Asia-Pacific Journal: "The World is beginning to know Okinawa": Ota Masahide Reflects on his Life from the Battle of Okinawa to the Struggle for Okinawa
• In this essay, Ota cites the 5,200 Okinawans who have been victims of crimes perpetrated by U.S. soldiers, still uncollected unexploded bombs and bodily remains of Okinawans from the Battle of Okinawa, and ongoing collective post-traumatic stress, in a plea for peace and the end the militarization of Okinawa:
Thus the war is still going on for the people in Okinawa. Why shall we start preparing for a new war, while the old war is not over yet?"The war is still going on for the people of Okinawa" was published in Magazine 9 in 2007.
• "Supreme Court of Japan Testimony on U.S. Troop Presence," given by Masahide Ota when he was governor of Okinawa, published at JRPI Critique in 1997.